Johnny Depp Revenge: Saudis Eyeing Paramount Purchase

The actor received rockstar treatment at the recent Red Sea International Film Festival, backed by Saudis and their $800 billion investment fund.

The actor received rockstar treatment at the recent Red Sea International Film Festival, backed by Saudis and their $800 billion investment fund.

Johnny Depp Revenge: Saudi-Backed Studios Eyeing Paramount Purchase

Johnny Depp gets his revenge and is still the king, as flying under the radar happens to be a report that offers the Saudis are eyeing the purchase of a major Hollywood studio, said to be Paramount Pictures.

Just last week, Johnny Depp was an honored celebrity guest at the Red Sea Film Festival along with other notable celebrities including Will Smith, Michelle Williams, Chris Hemsworth, Gwyneth Paltrow, Joel Kinnaman, and Halle Berry.

According to reports, the Saudis didn’t hold back. Will Smith is said to have received a whopping million dollars for attending, Gwyneth Paltrow even more, and rumors offer that Johnny Depp stayed at the Royal Palace but insiders have said Depp actually stayed at the Shangri-La resort on the Red Sea. Regardless, the Saudis and the Red Sea International Film Festival spared no expense.

johnny depp pirates caribbean

So what’s going on with the Saudis?

Via the official site, The Red Sea Film Festival is put on by The Red Sea Film Foundation, “an independent, non-profit organization created to support the film industry in Saudi Arabia in the production and distribution of films, as well as education on cinema. The Foundation’s initiatives support the ambitious plans for the Kingdom in the entertainment industries, with its pillars of a vibrant society, an ambitious nation and a thriving economy.”

What those “ambitious plans for the Kingdom in the entertainment industries” include is that the Saudis are said to want to diversify their economy beyond oil, so they are getting into the film business.

As we all know, the Saudis have some big bucks, where it’s said they have an $800 billion Public Investment Fund — that’s with a “b.” The Saudi Royal Family is said to be worth upwards of $3 trillion.

To put that number in perspective, Disney is valued at $170.88 billion; Comcast, which owns Universal Pictures, is valued at $179.40 billion; Sony is $118.82 billion, and Warner Bros. Discovery at $29.62 billion.

Paramount? Parent company, Paramount Global, is valued at $10.62 billion.

According to Variety, the Saudis have been trying to get in bed with Hollywood for some time. However, things went sour following the murder of The Washington Post columnist Jamal Khashoggi at the hands of Saudi government agents, which saw deals between the two slow to a trickle.

That’s all now changing as former Warner Bros. production president Greg Silverman has now inked a deal with Saudi Arabia’s Film AlUla studio for 10 projects over three years.

But the bigger news could be that the Saudis want their own Hollywood studio, as Variety notes:

But is a much bigger deal looming? In recent weeks, chatter swirled that the country’s $800 billion Public Investment Fund is looking to buy a major studio, namely Paramount.

johnny depp will smith
Will Smith hugs Jonny Depp at the Red Sea International Film Festival
Via Will Smith Instagram

What does this have to do with Johnny Depp?

“So Johnny Depp just scored the biggest Hollywood win the man could ever have. I mean no joke. I mean it is beyond massive,” said Depp supporter That Umbrella Guy via YouTube. “So the folks that not only love but financially back Johnny Depp right now, they are talking about wanting to become a Power Player in Hollywood.”

The Youtuber continued, “The way that they’re saying that they’re going to do this is by buying a major Hollywood studio. This isn’t a pipe dream either, they have $800 billion in public investment funds that they can throw at this. They’re saying they want to buy Paramount.”

Saudis love Johnny Depp

True to That Umbrella Guy’s words, it’s known the Saudis love Johnny Depp as following the Red Sea International Film Festival, headlines hit the trades offering We Love You Johnny!”: Depp Gets Rock Star Treatment in Saudi Arabia, Maïwenn and Johnny Depp charm audience at Red Sea, Johnny Depp and Ranveer Singh at star-studded opening of Red Sea Film Festival 2023, Will Smith Hugs & Poses With Johnny Depp, and lots more.

This is in stark contrast to the headlines and how the media treated Depp during the trial with Amber Heard who has just been voted among the most disliked celebrities of 2023.

“I mean think about this, we’re talking about folks that love Johnny Depp enough that he was given the real rockstar treatment not just in adoration, mind you, but put up in the finest digs,” explained That Umbrella Guy. “We’re talking about rumors that he was staying at the palace. I mean that is big time there, plus he’s had not one but now two movies that he wants to make, financially backed. I mean essentially he’s gotten a blank check. They’re talking about millions and millions being paid out.”

Johnny Depp doesn’t need Hollywood they need him

As a result of the trial, Disney dropped Johnny Depp from the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise and Warner Bros. dropped Depp from Fantastic Beasts; however, Depp doesn’t need Disney or any of the major Hollywood studios.

“Johnny Depp Period Drama ‘Jean du Barry’ to be Backed by Saudi Arabia’s Red Sea Film Festival Fund,” reported Variety back in January. The movie toplines Johnny Depp as 18th century French King Louis XV.

“Why Johnny Depp and Saudi Arabia Are New BFF,” posted THR. “By backing Cannes Film Festival opener ‘Jeanne du Barry’ and courting its mercurial star [Johnny Depp], the Gulf nation is continuing its post-Khashoggi push for legitimacy in the global film community. So far, it’s working.”

The Saudi community is also extremely happy.

“Johnny Depp praises Saudi Arabia’s emerging film landscape at the Red Sea International Film Festival,” posted Arab News.

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